It is energizing to begin my presidential work by building on the work of past-president Sandra Hughes-Hassell’s presidential theme and to collaborate with other division presidents’ creating presidential themes that compliment each other.
I have chosen Supporting Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion through Outcomes and Assessment as my presidential theme for 2018-2019. This theme furthers YALSA’s work of supporting library staff who serve teens in several ways. It highlights the need for a paradigm shift highlighted in YALSA’s Future’s Report that indicates the importance assessing programs for outcomes and not attendance. As well as, creating assessments that answer larger questions about teens interaction with your programming other than did they like it. This theme also supports the infographic Reimagined Library Services for and with Teens, which highlight the types of outcomes that can have impact on teens lives, and will help you figure out how to measure those outcomes. The theme also speaks directly to the Teen Services Competencies for Library Staff, which includes assessment as part of Content Areas 3, 4, 6, 9, and 10. All of this speaks to the needs of members who are looking for guidance on impactful outcomes and assessment, and moves YALSA closer to reaching the goals it laid out in its implementation plan.
Assessment and outcomes can provide members with a lot of valuable information about their teens and how best to serve them. My presidential theme will focus on how assessment and outcomes can support equity, diversity, and inclusion through the questions asked and approaches taken. It will build off the recommendations made by the Advancing Diversity Taskforce and YALSA’s commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion.
With the help of my Presidential Taskforce, I hope to infuse the theme across the organization’s activities and align the outputs with YALSA’s Strategic and Implementation Plan:
Advocacy & Activism
- Incorporate the theme into summer learning, Teen Read Week™ and Teen Tech Week™
- Create position and/or issue papers on the theme
Leading the Transformation of Teen Services
Research & Best Practices
- Create a summer learning assessment tool
- Encourage appropriate YALSA publications (inc. journals, books, blogs) to publish information about the issues, and/or host a themed issue or month
- The summer 2019 issue of YALS will focus on outcomes
- Identify and highlight existing related resources from ALA and beyond to YALSA members
- Adapt the resources, if necessary
- Create a grant, contest or award to promote, gather and highlight best practices
- To help members better understand and support the issue, a toolkit could be developed that would include:
- An overview of the issue
- Information on why it’s important for members to adopt an outcomes approach
- Examples of best practices and/or emerging practices
- Resources, including adaptable survey instruments
- Create new CE on the topic, as appropriate, including creating webinars, an e-course, snack break videos, and in-person sessions and pre-conferences at conferences and symposia
- Incorporate the issue into existing CE offerings
- Direct members towards existing CE from other organizations, either inside or outside ALA
- Participate in targeted conferences on the topic and/or create canned presentations that individuals can give at local or regional events
Member Engagement & Recruitment
- As needed, get feedback from members to identify or prioritize specific needs in relation to the topic
- Include questions in the Aug. 2018 member survey
- Recruit individuals to start an Interest Group on the topic
- Build out an issue focused page on the wiki seeded with a list of existing useful resources, further reading, etc. and then encourage members to add content to the page
- Set up an email listserv where individuals with an interest in the topic can connect
Fund & Partner Development
- Identify and partner with outside organizations, as appropriate, to create resources and opportunities for members, i.e.,
- Center for Youth Program Quality
- Identify ways YALSA could collaborate with and/or support other appropriate ALA units, i.e.,
- PLA’s Project Outcome
- Establish a member taskforce or standing committee to support the issue
- Determine whether there’s a good opportunity to create and sell a particular product or service in relation to the issue
This may seem like a tall order but together we can accomplish it. I know that outcomes and assessment may seem daunting, but this year through the work related to this theme outcomes and assessment with a purpose of supporting equity, diversity, and inclusion will become understandable and achievable. If you are interested in participating in this work or have ideas you would like to share please contact me.
I look forward to working with you all this year, and moving library services for teens forward!
Crystle Martin, President